Historic Temples

Coordinates: 37.830901, 23.917354

Church of Taxiarches

At a beautiful location approximately 1 km south of Kalyvia Thorikou in Attica, near the avenue connecting Kalyvia with Anavyssos, is one of the most important Byzantine monuments of Attica, the church of Taxiarches.

The history of the monument goes back to the Early Christian years, 5th and 6th century. At the same location there was then a three-aisled basilica, which was abandoned due to the destructions that the area had to suffer from raids and plunders in the first Christian centuries. Later, in the Byzantine Period, on its ruins they built a small church, which was limited to the middle aisle of the initial church. It was the catholicon of the monastery of Taxiarches and was reconstructed during the Turkish occupation of Greece. At the cells of the monastery lived the English writer and philhellene Lord Byron when he was travelling towards Sounion in 1810.

The church in its present day form is am aisle-less, wooden roof basilica. Around its walls but also walled in them one can see the remains of the two older churches. Characteristic is its built screen, which dates from the Byzantine Period, and the incorporated Early Christian sculptures, as well as the καθώς και το twin shrine, in front of it, which consists of two monolithic, fluted columns with elaborate capitals.

The church was always decorated in its interior by wall paintings, and in certain parts all three layers are preserved. The last layer, which is still visible today, dates from the 18th century and includes impressive representations of full bodied figures and scenes, such as the Annunciation and the Man of Sorrows. Worth mentioning is the enormous representation of Archangel Michael, next to the screen. These works are attributed to the disciples of Georgios Markos, famous religious painter of the 18th century, who had painted a lot of churches in Mesogeia of Attica.

At the church’s precinct there are other buildings, which in reality are the cells of the older church.

The church is used only once a year, on November 8th, and during its celebration the custom of “korbani” is revived, offering food to the believers, which can be seen in several parts of Attica.



Byznatine Period


8 November

Holy Metropolis: 
Mesogeia and Lavreotiki

Kalivia Square, Kalivia 19010

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